UPDATED: VH responds to mass casualty event in Cul de Sac (video added)

Press release

PRESS RELEASE – Tuesday’s massive explosion in Cul-de-Sac triggered the full mass casualty response from the Victoria Hospital as the casualties came steaming into the Accident and Emergency Department.

A total of 15 patients presented at the hospital suffering from various injuries with some requiring immediate surgical procedures.

One patient succumbed to his injuries while others were stabilized.

Additional nurses, doctors, ancillary and admin staff responded quickly to manage the injured as well as the friends and family members who arrived on the scene.

It was a baptism by fire for newly appointed Ag. Executive Director of the Victoria Hospital, Brenda Calixte who took up her duties only one day ago. She was however exceedingly please with the response of the hospital staff to manage the situation.

“From the time we got the news, what we did is we rounded up all the clinical personnel, surgical personnel, the Medical Director, the Nursing Director, all our admin persons are there. We also got more security personnel to come in. We also got the domestic assistants, the orderlies, all these persons including our admin persons, accountant and everybody, all those persons in supplies, the lab, everybody was rounded up and everybody is here… Persons are working and the doctors are really helpful, the doctor are there and they are working.”

The Executive Director sympathized with family members for the sudden shock brought about by this incident but assured that the hospital in adequately managing the situation.

“Right now we have everything under control. We also have the Lamina Hospital in Martinique they have called us to let us know that they are on standby if we need to transfer anybody to Martinique.”

Calixte added that patients on wards who could safely be managed at home were discharged to make bed space available, while other persons reporting to the A&E Department agreed to wait a little longer to be attended to by medical personnel.

Prime Minister, Hon. Allen Chastanet and Minister for Economic Development, Hon. Guy Joseph were on site at the Victoria Hospital to provide assistance to staff particularly with respect to travel arrangement to Martinique and to empathize with numerous family and friends gathered at the hospital.

“It is very sad and my sympathies go out to the families especially those who have lost their loved ones and our prayers are with those who are still alive and maybe in a critical condition that things are going to work out and that we are not going to have any more casualties than we have. It’s very sad when an individual leaves and goes to work and his family expects him to come back home and on the job a tragedy like this happens. It’s a very difficult situation to deal with.”

Minister Joseph indicated that while attending a budget meeting on the Waterfront they received reports that the building had shaken due to a massive explosion at Farrand Quarry in Cul-de-Sac. The meeting was quickly ended and he and the Prime Minister immediately visited the site where they learnt of two deaths on location and a number of injured persons transported to Victoria Hospital.

“I know the Prime Minister has been in touch with counterparts in Martinique, medical persons and other persons to put measures in place in the event that we need to transport anybody to Martinique. I have been in discussion with the directors at the hospital. As far as we know the response has been very good from the hospital. All the personnel that is required were called in and they responded very quickly and we must really applaud our medical team and our workers for responding with such limited resources as we know the challenges that we have in the health sector to the mass casualties that we have had today.”

The Victoria Hospital provided coffee, tea and water in their staff lounge to family members awaiting the outcome of their loved one’s situation while the Prime Minister organised meals for the hard working staff and volunteers many of whom worked extended shifts.

Four patients were also airlifted to Martinique for treatment early Wednesday Morning. Three doctors from Martinique are currently at Victoria Hospital to assist with patient management.

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23 comments

  1. SOME PEOPLE GET AWAY WITH ANYTHING IN ST LUCIA BECAUSE OF NAME AND MONEY THIS NEEDS TO STOP IT'S 2017 PEOPLE NEED TO PAY FOR THEIR CRIMES AGAINST SOCIETY WHAT A SHAME A BIG SHAME

    (1)(0)
  2. My condolences to the family of our departed brothers. May the family find peace in the Lord.
    To VH I say well done

    (0)(0)
  3. I can say well done...but guess what..the hospital and its entire administration needs to show that professionalism to the ordinary man the ordinary civilian coming into the emergency unit..let it show its not only towards emergency situations!! Keep it real!!

    (0)(0)
  4. what really caused the explosion?. And if what is circling around was the culprit, why was it stored on the compound and not at the POLICE'S MAGAZINE?. where is there any accountability?. Who is to Blame?.

    (2)(0)
  5. Very Very Very commendable Victoria Hospital. Bravo Bravo Bravo...I can't say this enough...Keep it UP!!!

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  6. First the corned beef now this??

    (0)(1)
  7. If my memory serve me right,just the day before there were drills taking place i think it was at the corinth sec school where officials were teaching on safe practices in case of mass casualties or in case of a disaster,we might think its another drama situation but we can never take everyday living for granted...no one knows what tommorow may bring.from our government down to our healthcare are not up to date when it comes to a mass casualty destruction simply because we have no experience with such situations....these are all signs and wonders...WHAT IF?.....i wanna commend the staff at VH for handling at their best to their ability,mr chastenet for overseeing whatever way he cudda contribute at the moment..

    (7)(0)
  8. it seems is the executive director that had to be changed for things go work in there

    (7)(5)
  9. I hope this opens the government 's eyes as to the great importance of proper medical facilities on the island. So the urgency of the new national hospital still idling comes to the fore as sad situations like the cul de sac one wait on no one. Who knows if the container was closer to a larger number of people or vice versa the death toll could have been an even more sorry number

    As for the St. Judes construction fiasco. St. Judes is near the international airport. It serves not only the people of vieux fort but guests at the hotel(s) in vieux fort. Importantly it would have to come into action with any bad situation at the airport. So what really can a falling down stadium do as a hospital.

    The St. Judes fiasco has to be addressed by the government with both alacrity and sincerity. It cannot go under the carpet as most things of that nature do. Persons MUST be held responsible and the government must push on to completion.
    it is a disgrace how even the present government with a strong mandate to clean up all previous mess is now starring at a national financial and management almost catastrophe, spends a near million to investigate it and is now apparently prepared to sit back and pussy foot about this extravagant mismanagement that occurred.

    (22)(0)
  10. wow i applaud victoriahospital wow first time yall doing something right keep up the good work now thats how a hospital need to be runned

    (21)(4)
    • "Runned" really?? Ik this may be pretty but... "runned"???

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      • stick to the subject at hand no one asked for your microscope and fine tooth comb so yes "IK" "this may be pretty" move the lassie in your eye first before you judge others and in case you didnt see it since you have so much lassie in your eye let me spell it out for you. you most likely wanted to write 'I KNOW THIS MAY BE PETTY BUT..."

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  11. good job to my friend, i know you can do it with the Lord Jesus christ by your side all things are possible. Executive Director of the Victoria Hospital, Brenda Calixte. May the good lord continue to shower you under her blood.

    (12)(1)
  12. good job to my friend, i know you can do it with the Lord Jesus christ by your side all things are possible. Executive Director of the Victoria Hospital, Brenda Calixte. May the good lord continue to shower you under her blood.

    (5)(1)
  13. great job V.H. And kudos to Brenda Calixe for her efficiency in dealing with the matter on hand

    (9)(1)
  14. Well done VH, hope you guys stay positive and manage the task ahead

    (6)(0)
  15. So sad my condolence goes out to the families thanks VH and Martinique for urll help

    (6)(0)
  16. Staff at the hospital always complain when mass casualty simulation exercises are being carried out, with some seeing it as a waste of their time. Well I'm sure everyone is happy now that the staff is week trained and was capable of handling the situation. I'm proud of the response of the staff. I wish the government would provide some kind of psychological service to the A & E staff members who worked last night because situations like this can be traumatic for them. But, I guess persons always think that A & E staff is used to seeing these kinds of things. But....like Rick used to say "that's for another show! "

    (9)(1)
  17. La Menard Hospital

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  18. Sad time for st.lucia, reading this brought tears. Thanks u Victoria hospital and also our neighboring island Martinique. Condolences to the grieving families

    (15)(0)
  19. Sadly, this is just a foretaste of what can happen with a mishap at any one of our two airports. For the departed, God bless their souls.

    (6)(1)
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